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The tertiary survey: how to avoid missed injuries 

The tertiary survey: how to avoid missed injuries
The tertiary survey: how to avoid missed injuries

Samuel A. Tisherman

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date: 22 February 2020

In the trauma setting, evaluation of possible injuries must proceed simultaneously withongoing resuscitation the patient. The patient should be fully evaluated expeditiously sothat all injuries are recognized and managed optimally. This complete evaluationof the trauma patient in the ICU or hospital ward has been called the tertiary survey, as first described by Enderson, et al (1990). A complete tertiary survey is critical to fully assess the patient and avoidmissing important injuries, which can have a significant impact on morbidity aswell as mortality.The tertiary survey is not a one-time evaluation, but a process that includesserial physical examinations and assessments.

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